July 15th, 2008
08:10 AM ET
10 years ago

Reed says 'not interested' in VP role

Jack Reed says he doesn't want to be VP.

Jack Reed says he doesn't want to be VP.

(CNN) - He's making a high-profile trip to Iraq later this month with Barack Obama, but Rhode Island Sen. Jack Reed says he has no desire to be the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate's running mate.

Earlier: Fueling VP speculation, Obama heading to Iraq with Hagel, Reed

Reed, a graduate of West Point has been mentioned as a possible VP candidate given his foreign policy credentials and bipartisan respect on Capitol Hill, told the Associated Press Monday being Obama's running mate is a "position which I have no interest in."

Reed, a two-term senator who is currently in a relatively easy race for re-election, also said the Obama campaign has not asked him for any official documentation pertaining to its VP search process. It has been reported that the Illinois senator's campaign has officially approached at least two candidates so far - Virginia Sen. Jim Webb and Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd.

Election Center: Check out who's on the VP short lists

"There are people that are spending a lot of time, one, looking for candidates, and trying to promote themselves as candidates," Reed also said. "And I'm in neither category."

Reed is little-known beyond his home state, though proponents trump his working-class upbringing, heroic stint in Vietnam, and longtime tenure on the powerful Armed Services Committee as reasons why he could be a valuable asset on the Democratic presidential ticket. On the other hand the Rhode Island senator has a low-key speaking style, comes from a region that is already firmly Democratic, and likely wouldn't embrace the attack-dog role usually required of presidential running mates.

Still, Reed's name received new buzz late last week after it was reported he, along with Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel, would accompany Obama on an upcoming trip to Iraq. Hagel, an opponent of the Iraq war who has become increasingly critical of his own party, has said he would be open to serving as Obama's VP.

soundoff (376 Responses)
  1. aaaa

    this guy was never asked so shut up your second fame is up.

    July 15, 2008 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  2. Lee

    I find it absolutely amazing all the idiots who come out of the woodwork claiming people are "distancing" themselves from Obama. You can't turn down a job you weren't offered in the first place.

    July 15, 2008 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  3. bimmer

    I heard from a reliable source on the condition of anonymity that the other person in the New Yroker cover has been asked to provide documents to search commi.ttee.

    July 15, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  4. Matt Canoga Park

    No one wants the job and no one wants Hillary to have it.

    July 15, 2008 01:32 am at 1:32 am |
  5. Luke

    Makes sense. Reed has a young daughter and was worried about the whirlwind life that his running for VP would force upon her. So for those of you saying he's afraid of joining a "sinking ship", keep in mind that there are other factors.

    July 15, 2008 01:40 am at 1:40 am |
  6. R. Martin, Phoenix


    Before you start calling people liars you should check your facts: the maximum contribution an individual can give is $2500. Luckily Obama has a huge pool of enthusiastic supporters who will be happy to give until he's elected in Nov.

    July 15, 2008 01:41 am at 1:41 am |
  7. Al

    Obama was the only choice from the beginning. All 77 senators who authorized Iraq war (including McCain and Hillay) should have been in jail long ago. And I still read inCNN that besides 48% pro-Obama, there are 42% pro-McCain idiots. The only thing democrats need to be in power is to improve education in this country. Reducing number of morons who support a war with a country they cannot find on a map – that's most reliable strategy for democrats, and I give it free to Howard Deen.

    Obama 2008

    July 15, 2008 02:09 am at 2:09 am |
  8. suzyku

    How can you say NO to something that hasn't been offered?! Obama has clearly stated to "ignore" all of the speculation, HE and ONLY HE will announce who his V.P. candidate is. Why on earth can't these people let it go until that happens? The pundits and the "non" candidates are getting boring already.

    July 15, 2008 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  9. Lisa

    Wonder if Hillary's surrogates are pressuring would-be VP's to say no to the job so she can get it?

    July 15, 2008 02:22 am at 2:22 am |
  10. John

    Lets hope that Hillary has no desire to be VP either. She can do better then that later on.

    July 15, 2008 02:31 am at 2:31 am |
  11. Karl

    Reporting so many rejections is not good for Obama's campaign. He and his team have better to announce his VP sooner than later.

    July 15, 2008 02:34 am at 2:34 am |
  12. Maximus

    I do not understand what the fuss is all about. Barack Obama has PLENTY of VP picks, especially if it is not limited to Dems...

    1. Karen Sabellius
    2. Joe Biden
    3. John Edwards
    4. Gen. Wesley Clark
    5. Mike Gravel
    6. Dennis Kucinich
    Okay, fine, if it comes down to it... Hillary Clinton

    1. Colin Powell
    2. Chuck Hagel
    3. Ron Paul
    4. pretty much anyone else who is NOT a neocon

    Independents, Greens, Libertarians, etc.
    1. Jesse Ventura
    2. Ralph Nader
    3. ...uuuh... can't think of any now... but a VP slot is the closest a 3rd party candidate can expect to the presidency

    I would expect an Obama-Edwards or Obama-Sebellius ticket. I could even anticipate a cross-party Obama-Paul, Obama-Hagel, or Obama-Powel ticket.

    July 15, 2008 02:35 am at 2:35 am |
  13. Maximus

    Au contraire, McCain's list is rather limited...

    1. Dick Cheney (unlikely considering he did not even run for the presidential nomination, despite being VP)
    2. Fred Thompson (two dry old white guys, whoot!)
    3. Rudy Giuliani (his twin brother)
    4. Condoleeza Rice (self-explanatory)
    5. Charlie Crist
    6. Uuuuh...
    7. George W. Bush (oh wait, he can't be VP after his 2-term limit)
    8. Arnold Schwarzeneger (being born in Austria, he is disqualified for presidential office via the natural-born citizen clause... then again, McCain was born in Panama, and nobody seems to care)

    July 15, 2008 02:42 am at 2:42 am |
  14. Clay

    I believe that what would be best for America would be for Obama to choose someone who is a guy like Hunter S. Thompson someone who is so against the Bush Administration that they know how to fix it economically.

    July 15, 2008 02:42 am at 2:42 am |
  15. Maximus

    P.S. Oh, yeah... Joe Lieberman. The only Democrat likely to run as McCain's VP...

    July 15, 2008 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  16. john

    Dems had realized and know who Barack Hussein Obama is that's the reason why they are distancing from him. He's very dangerous guy that has no ambition for American people but to put them down, believe it or not he's a muslim and it's the fact. Whoever is insisting that he's not a muslim try to visist the place in Indonesia where he was raised by his muslim father. His words are full of lies just to persuade people to go with his side.

    July 15, 2008 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  17. TESAP

    Oh well....................... next....................

    BARACK THE VOTE PEOPLE........................

    July 15, 2008 08:21 am at 8:21 am |
  18. NObama

    Farakhan for VP.

    July 15, 2008 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  19. ch

    No Hillary as VP = No vote for Obama.

    July 15, 2008 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  20. Independent America

    What I don't understand. Is someone who has not been asked to provide information is saying I don't want to VP. Clearly, no one asked you. To me, as I see this string of white men, saying they don't want to vp when they have not been approached is quite offensive to me. It's a shame that racism still exists. Why is there such a relish to say this. Have we heard one person in the Republican party say they do not want to be McCain's running mate? Why such dissafection among the Democrats? You know what it is? I wonder if It is the Hillary effect. I wonder if there is any pressure behind the scenes by Clintonites trying to affect potential vp candidates... so she is higher on the list. After all, what is the political benefit to saying outloud to the public, I am not interested in being Senator Obama's running mate. Very strange....

    July 15, 2008 08:29 am at 8:29 am |
  21. SHAME


    July 15, 2008 08:29 am at 8:29 am |
  22. Mike - Texas

    Smart man.

    July 15, 2008 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  23. Veteran in Kansas

    Why report non-news. Was he asked, no. Was it reported by the Obama camp that he was in the running, no. Does this mean that everyone Obama has a face to face with is being considered, I don't think so.

    Let me clarify one thing to date, I am not seekling the VP position, I do not desire the VP post. There I have come out and said it, it has the same news worthness as all of the others that have not been asked coming forth and saying they don't want it.

    July 15, 2008 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  24. Danel

    Too much speculation on the part of CNN. Why NOT just let it be? CNN keeps pushing this presumptive VP down our throats, STOP it already!! What's the rush? Why not concentrate on McCain?

    July 15, 2008 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  25. Kim, IL

    Reed, Hagel and Obama are traveling together. Don't worry people, they will talk about it on the plane...lol

    July 15, 2008 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16